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Mild Country White Sourdough Bread

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As a gluten-free baker, I gave up on producing a showy loaf a long time ago.  I always rolled my eyes a little when I saw photos online of perfect bloom or wide-open crumb.  "The mustard is going to just fall right through," I would think to my self disapprovingly, shaking my head a little. It turns out, I was just jealous. After a decade of gluten-free bread baking and recipe development, and through a collaboration with some other bakers, I've come up with a sourdough bread recipe that produces an open crumb, a large bloom, and sometimes, if I'm lucky, an ear.   The bread has a very mild, pleasant sourdough flavor and is very light in color. The crumb is very open but not too delicate.  It has a chewiness to the texture that I associate with a good sourdough bread.  The crust gets a nice browning and it toasts up nicely. And I don't mind the mustard falling through as much as I thought I would. Many thanks to Michael Hollesen who came up with the original versio

Sourdough Starter Ready to use in 3-7 Days

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The traditional way to create a starter can take a few weeks to a month to have a usable culture. Some science-minded bakers have figured out a way to accelerate the process to have a viable and very beautiful tasting culture in just 3-7 days. Using heat and hydration it’s possible to speed up the fermentation to get through the “bad bacteria” phase in just 48 hours, leaving you a usable culture on the third day with some luck. I created my starter on a Tuesday and I baked with it on that Friday with great results. I first came across this method in a post on The Fresh Loaf by the contributor Ars Pistorica, AKA Ian Lowe of Apiece Bakery in Tasmania. I’ve been using this method ever since I first read about it in 2013. He uses whole wheat and/or rye. It’s not the only way to accelerate the first stages of creating a starter, but this is how I’ve adapted this method to various gluten-free grains. Use whole grain, freshly milled flour if possible. The method can be used for almost

Home-made Falafel

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Falafel: the ultimate gluten-free, vegan, healthy, delicious food.  Practically a complete food unto itself with protein, carbs, and healthy fats, and vegetables all in a small delicious package.  But sadly, in the USA, they are often not made gluten-free when they so easily could be. I was traveling in Granada, Spain a few years ago when my then-fiancĂ© and I were looking for a good, inexpensive meal that was a change from Spanish food.  We found a Lebanese restaurant and really lucked out - their falafel was gluten-free!  It turns out that falafel is usually gluten-free outside of the US.  But more than that, it was the most delicious falafel I've ever tasted.  It was kind of smooth and creamy on the inside, and very, very green as well.  The outside was the ultimate crispy crust. Recently I decided to re-create that falafel experience.  I was partly motivated because I recently got a Delonghi Deep Fryer.   Deep frying the falafel is what gives it the super-crispy crust.  Ho

Restaurant-style Hummus Recipe

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Have you ever ordered hummus at a "healthy" or "natural" restaurant and it came to the table as chunky, dry, mashed-up garbanzo beans?  What a disappointment!  This recipe will give you home-made hummus that's closer to what you would find in a Lebanese restaurant - creamy and smooth. Thanks to theKitchn.com for the recipe that inspired this post ! With the aid of a food processor, this recipe is really easy.  The trick is to add back plenty of the delicious liquid from the garbanzo beans. First, open and drain, reserving the liquid: a 15-oz can of garbanzo beans, aka chick peas Put the garbanzo beans in the food processor along with: About 1/4 of the reserved liquid, plus more as needed 3 Tablespoons tahini 3 Tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil 1 clove garlic juice from 1/2 lemon (only use fresh lemon) 1 tsp salt Black pepper to taste Blend the ingredients together for about 5 minutes, scraping down the sides of the bowl occasionally. 

"Stay at Home" Recipes for a Global Pandemic

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Hello Friends, It has been a long time since I posted a recipe.  Well, here in Oregon we are under a "Stay at Home" order due to the COVID-19 crisis, and I am diligently staying at home.  I haven't gone to a restaurant or gotten delivery in weeks, and that means I'm cooking. Below are some of the recipes I've been revisiting during the Stay at Home order.  Then, up next, I will post a few new recipes that I've been throwing in the mix to have some healthy vegetarian Mediterranean meals, including falafel, hummus, and tzatziki. First, my fun project.  I made some Pain au Chocolate and finally got some good crumb shots!  I used the Quicker, Easier Method for the croissant dough. Pain au Chocolate I have some of the pastry dough saved to possibly make Chicken Pot Pie one night.  Chicken is a staple around here during the best of times, so it's also a great staple during a global pandemic.  I've been thinking up ways to make it a different me

Chile Relleno Video from "De Mi Rancho a Tu Cocina"

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It's been awhile!  I've been meaning to create a new blog post lately and this video inspired me.  Chile Relleno is one of the few dishes that I can't enjoy when I'm in Mexico because it has a little bit of flour in it.  I make it at home by subbing out the flour for white rice flour.  This video shows a slightly different technique than I have in my recipe , and it also answers the question I've always had about what exactly is in the sauce.  Please enjoy! https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5WCni7y8i44

Croissants, the Quick-er, Easy-er Way

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The Julia Childs croissant recipe takes 24 hours.  I don't want to brag here, but my new croissant recipe only takes six!  Croissants aren't easy, but I've taken the tricky bits out.  These crescent rolls are even better than if you took an extra18 hours to make them. The traditional method of making croissants calls for a laborious task called "laminating" that takes up lots of time and labor.  This recipe uses a technique typically seen in other types of pastries and biscuits - cutting in the butter.  This is much faster than laminating and doesn't take much in the way of technique.  So never fear, you do not need to get a degree from the Cordon Bleu to make these tasty pastries! Croissant Recipe, Quicker and Easier Mix time:10 minutes Chill time: 60 minutes Rolling/shaping time: 30 minutes Rise time: 3-4 hours Cook time: 20 minutes Yield: 8-12 croissants In a food processor, or in a medium mixing bowl, blend together: